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April 30, 2002

Ann Hutchison

NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.

Phone: 650/604-3039 or 650/604-9000


NOTE TO EDITORS AND NEWS DIRECTORS: News media representatives are invited to cover this year’s Space Day 2002 activities sponsored by NASA Ames Research Center. To reach NASA Ames, take the Moffett Field exit off U.S. 101 and drive east to the main gate at Moffett Federal Airfield. U.S. media representatives must have valid picture ID in order to enter Ames. Foreign media representatives must be escorted, if cleared for entry.


San Francisco Bay Area residents and news media are invited to share the excitement of space exploration on May 1 and 2 at a series of special events sponsored by NASA Ames Research Center to celebrate Space Day 2002.

Co-chaired by former astronaut and Senator John Glenn, this global celebration is dedicated to the extraordinary achievements, benefits and opportunities of space exploration. Space Day is celebrated each year on the first Thursday in May.

"Space Day is a wonderful opportunity for NASA to share with the public the achievements and wonder of space exploration," said NASA Ames Director Dr. Henry McDonald. "It also is a means to inspire youth to study science and math and to continue the vision of our space pioneers."

NASA Ames will have a series of special events to celebrate Space Day 2002.

  • On May 1 at 7 p.m. PDT, Dr. Gregory Benford, professor of physics at the University of California, Irvine, will speak about "Navigating the Gulf: The Borderline of Science and Fiction," at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, Calif. He will discuss how science fiction can help us understand the cosmos and see our future more clearly. This free public lecture is part of the Silicon Valley Astronomy Lecture Series. Details are available by calling the series hotline at 650/949-7888. A $2 campus parking permit is required.
  • NASA Ames invites news media to cover a Director's Breakfast and tour on May 2 at 8 a.m.PDT for student winners of the Santa Clara Valley Science and Engineering Fair and the San Francisco Bay Area Science Fair. Twenty-four students in grades 6 to 12 and their parents and teachers will be honored for their outstanding achievements. The breakfast will be in the Ames Visitor Center.
  • On May 2, news media representatives are invited to Ames’ Aerospace Encounter (AAE) at 10 a.m. PDT to observe 5th-grade students from Oak Knoll School in Menlo Park, Calif., as they experience the AAE’s unique, interactive programs. Located in a renovated supersonic wind tunnel in Bldg. N-226, this classroom facility makes the math and science curriculum come alive through out-of-this-world fun for students in grades 4 to 6.
  • Ames’ Space Station Biological Research Project invites news media to tour the walk-through Centrifuge Accommodation Module (CAM) mock-up on May 2 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. PDT in Bldg. N-244, second floor mezzanine. The CAM is a working laboratory that will house several pieces of hardware for the study of cells, plants and animals on the International Space Station (ISS). Also available will be a model of the Biomass Production System, which currently is growing plants on board the ISS. Scientists will be available to answer questions.
  • On May 2, Dr. Orlando Santos, science lead for fundamental biology and the Space Station Biological Research Project at NASA Ames, will be available from 9-10:30 a.m. and 2-5 p.m. PDT at The Tech Museum in San Jose to answer questions and discuss Ames’ role in the International Space Station, in conjunction with the new IMAX movie, "Space Station 3D."
  • The news media and public are invited to visit the Ames Visitor Center, which houses wind tunnel models, a Mercury spacecraft, a moon rock, space suits, a 1/3-scale model of the space shuttle, and several research aircraft. Ongoing research programs are highlighted with displays, models and interactive computer software. The Visitor Center is open Monday thru Friday, 8:00 a.m. till 4:30 p.m. There is no admission charge. The gift shop sells NASA and space-related clothing, patches, posters, videos and more.


More than 70 non-profit, government, education and corporate Space Day partners host a variety of Space Day activities to inspire the next generation of explorers. Details about Space Day 2002 are available at:



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